Skip to main content

The Journal Gazette

  • Associated Press President Donald Trump speaks Tuesday with Rodney Scott, Border Patrol's San Diego sector chief, as he reviews border wall prototypesin San Diego.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 1:10 am

President visits California to review wall prototypes

Associated Press

also

ICE official resigns over 'false' claims

A spokesman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has resigned over what he described as “false” and “misleading” statements made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and ICE acting director Thomas Homan.

James Schwab worked out of the agency's San Francisco office until he abruptly quit last week. He said he had been told to “deflect” questions about the Oakland mayor's interference with an ICE raid last month and to refer reporters to statements from Sessions and Homan that suggested that hundreds of “criminals” escaped capture in Northern California because the mayor tipped them off.

“I quit because I didn't want to perpetuate misleading facts,” Schwab told the San Francisco Chronicle.

Sessions, Homan and President Donald Trump sharply criticized Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, a Democrat, for issuing a public warning in late February about an imminent ICE raid throughout the region. Schwab also criticized the mayor's warning as “misguided,” but he told Fox affiliate KTVU after resigning that ICE ended up capturing 232 suspected undocumented immigrants – even more than officials had originally expected.

– Washington Post

SAN DIEGO – President Donald Trump on Tuesday eagerly inspected eight towering prototypes for his long-sought wall at the U.S.-Mexico border and accused California of putting “the entire nation at risk” by refusing to take tough action against illegal immigration.

Trump, making his first trip to California as president, said he preferred a fully concrete wall because it was the hardest to climb, but he noted that it needed to be see-through. He said the first thing he noticed on the drive to the border was the patched-up holes in part of the existing fence.

“We have a lousy wall over here now, but at least it stops 90, 95 percent,” Trump said. “When we put up the real wall, we're going to stop 99 percent. Maybe more than that.”

Trump's visit was greeted with peaceful protests by demonstrators both for and against his planned wall. The trip came amid an escalating battle between his administration and the liberal state, which has refused to help federal agents detain immigrants in the U.S. illegally.

The president renewed his criticism of Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown, saying Tuesday that he was presiding over sky-high tax rates and that the state's sanctuary policies “put the entire nation at risk.”

“They're the best friend of the criminal,” Trump said. “That's what exactly is happening. The criminals take refuge in these sanctuary cities and it's very dangerous for our police and enforcement folks.”

The Justice Department last week sued to block a trio of California laws designed to protect people living in the U.S. illegally. Brown accused U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions of “going to war” with California to appease Trump.

After leaving the border, Trump basked in the cheers of U.S. Marines in Miramar, pointing to his work to build up the nation's military. He also suggested there may someday be a “space force” fighting alongside the nation's military branches.

Referencing his 2016 campaign showdown against Hillary Clinton – who received 4 million more votes than Trump in California – Trump vowed that “very soon we're going to Mars” and the nation would not be seeking to explore the red planet had his opponent won.